IAC Bulletin 36: 868-876 (1897)

Hybrid Roses, Gooseberries and Strawberries.



In Bulletins No. 22 and 32 a brief history is given of our work in crossing the Russian wild rose (rosa rugosa) and our Iowa wild rose (Rosa Arkansana) with pollen of some of our best garden varieties.

The purpose at present is to give some brief notes on the thrift and relative hardiness of varieties, character of flowers and habits of flowering. Cut No. 1, appended, gives a view of the hybrid plantation on June 15, 1897.

The vigorous and thrifty plants of the plantation are all supposed to be hybrids, as the work of crossing was done with great care and every bush is varied in habit, leaf or flower from the mother type. Over ninety per cent of the plants bear single flowers, with only five petals, but they are singularly varied in size and color of flower, size and color of the hips, and size, shape, and net veining of leaf.

About twenty of the varieties show double flowers, ranging in number of petals from fifteen up to 150. Some of the most promising show from forty to sixty-six petals. Like the single varieties, they are extremely variable in leaf and habit. All visitors speak of the vigor of growth and thrift of hybrids as a whole, and their exemption from the attacks of insects and fungi. The past season the rose slug in this vicinity has done much mischief, but the Rugosa and its hybrids have escaped its work.

After careful examination of our hybrids and the Rugosa hybrids we have introduced from other sources, the visitors also remark that there must be a near affinity between the Russian Rosa Rugosa and General Jacquiminot, as the number of fine hybrids from this cross exceeds all the others combined, and in thrift, perfection of leaf, and rich coloring and fragrance of flowers, they excel all others. Up to the present it is really a singular fact that in Germany, France, Russia and this country the best hybrids of the Rugosa have come from General Jacquiminot pollen.


The brief notes now given will include the most promising hybrids produced on the college grounds at Ames, followed with notes on the best Rugosa hybrids we have tested produced in Germany and the Eastern States.


(No. 1)—In Bulletin No. 32 this was named the I. A. C. Cuts No. 2, 3 and 4 give in succession the I. A. C., and its two parents.

I. A. C. ROSE.

The I. A. C. was one of the first of our hybrids to bloom freely, and we now decide it worthy of its name. It is a peculiarly vigorous grower, a free bloomer, has the thick, lustrous foliage of the Rugosa, and its flowers in size and number of petals excel General Jacquiminot, while its color and fragrance are not inferior. A peculiarity of this variety is that it has twenty-one more petals than its two parents combined.


(No. 2)—This also was noted in Bulletin No. 32. It proves a vigorous grower, with thick, leathery leaves and a free bloomer. It has only twenty-six petals, but so ar­ranged as to hide the center well. Its color is very near that of General Jacquiminot. It blooms well through the summer and in fall is often well loaded with buds in September.

(No. 6)—In foliage and habit this follows the male parent quite closely, but it endures summer heat and winter's cold far better than General Jacquiminot. It has thirty petals and is dark carmine in color.


(No. 8)—Bush remarkably vigorous in growth, with firm lustrous leaves of the Rugosa type. It has forty large petals, with dark crimson shade much like General Jacquiminot.

(No. 9)—Another very vigorous grower with Rugosa leaves. It has thirty-five petals, light carmine in color; a free bloomer through the season.

(No. 18)—Much like No. 9 in bush and leaf. It has thirty petals, dark crimson in color; peculiarly fragrant

(No. 19)—Another vigorous variety, with Rugosa leaves. It has twenty-five dark carmine petals, and la very showy, as its large flowers are in clusters.

(No. 22)—Still another near duplicate in growth and leaf. Its twenty-five large petals are darker in color than its male parent.

No. 2 ROSE

(No. 23)—A vigorous grower, with thick Rugosa leaves. It has about sixty petals, dark carmine in color, and peculiar fragrance. This promises to be very valuable, as it expands its numerous petals perfectly.

(No. 24)—A fine grower, with good foliage. Its first blooms appear about July 15, and continue until fall. It has about forty petals, dark carmine in color, and very fragrant.

(No. 25)—This is another noted for good leaf and vigor of growth. It shows about forty-five petals, dark carmine in color.

In this list we have not included a number of varieties that at present do not show as well in all respects as the ones noted. As the plants become older, some that have proven too double to open perfectly may be included.


The pollen of Lamarque was used on many blossoms of the Rugosa, as we hoped to secure from the resulting seedling one or more hardy and desirable climbers. Not one of its hybrids shows a climbing tendency, and only one of them shows double flowers. This only shows fifteen petals, pale red in color. But the bush is quite vigorous and the foliage fairly good, and it is a free bloomer. In connection with this failure it is well to state that we used pollen of Duchess de Brabant, American Beauty, Triumph de Exposition and Madame Masson, on a large number of Rugosa blossoms. From all these crosses we have failed to get a single hybrid with double flowers up to the present. But some of these hybrids are remarkably vigorous in habit, their foliage is fine and their single flowers are numerous, very large and peculiarly varied in colors, from white to the darkest shade of carmine and crimson.


From the pollen of Harrison white on Rugosa blossoms only one seedling shows double flowers, and, so far, these have never opened perfectly. This season it was loaded with flower buds showing thirty or more petals, but not one of them expanded perfectly. Some of these hybrids with single flowers have much interest.


Most of our hybrids coming from pollen of Gen. Jacquiminot on the flowers of our native rose, show modifications in leaf, habit, and flowers; but all, except three, have single flowers. One of these is peculiarly double and never expands fully, and the other two have only fifteen petals, light pink in color.



This is now quite common in the eastern nurseries. It is a Rugosa hybrid, but its male parent we do not know. It seems deficient to summer heat and drouth, and with us has not yet been injured by winter. Its leaves are of the Rugosa type, and it is a very free bloomer up to the autumn frosts. Its flowers are pure white in color, and its twenty-five petals hide the center well.


This, with the three following, were selected by Prof. Hansen, at the "Baumschule" of L. Spath, at Rixdorf, near Berlin, Germany, in 1884. They are said to be hybrids of the Russian Rugosa, crossed with pollen of Gen. Jacquiminot.

Its leaves are thick, leathery and rugose, and in growth it is peculiarly vigorous. It is a profuse bloomer well through the season. Its flowers are large, dark crimson in color, and its thirty-five stamens stand out distinctly like those of a Dahlia. This seems very promising, especially for the north half of Iowa and the cold north generally.


A true child of the Rugosa in leaf and habit. It is a free bloomer; flowers dark pink in color; number of petals, thirty.


Leaf rugose, but without the shining gloss of most Rugosa hybrids. A free bloomer and vigorous grower. It has fifty-two petals, with many half-developed ones among the sex organs; color, purplish crimson; quite fragrant.


Said to be a Rugosa hybrid, but does not show it in leaf or habit. A very free bloomer, with compact flower buds; petals, over one hundred, yet it appears to expand perfectly; color, pink. A peculiarity of this variety is that the sepals show a tendency to change into working leaves.


This came to us from north Germany. In leaf and habit it seems to be a near relative of the Rugosa, and equally hardy. It flowers very freely and for a long period. The sex organs seem all turned into petals, but very many are small and imperfect, not adding to the beauty as a whole; color light pink, and very fragrant.


Quite a large number of the single-flowered hybrids of Rugosa, with General Jacquiminot and other garden varieties, are peculiarly showy and of all colors, from white to the darkest crimson. Some of them have flowers five inches in diameter, with petals two inches across, while others have small flowers in clusters.

In Europe some of these single Rugosa hybrids are becoming popular. As an instance, the variety known as "Snowlight" retains the Rugosa leaf and is an immense and continuous bloomer of snow-white flowers.


Up to the present, our experience and observation favors the belief that the future favorite roses of the prairie states will be developed from the ironclad Rosa Rugosa of east Europe and our native wild roses. It has been fully demonstrated that their hybrids, with our finest half-hardy varieties, follow largely the native species in hardiness of plant, perfect foliage and complete unfolding of their flowers. It is also fully demonstrated that fine double varieties can be developed from primitive species in one generation.

CybeRose note: The correct spelling is "Jacqueminot"

In the Rosen-Zeitung of 1890 Dr. Müller, the breeder of Thusnelda writes:

"... this cultivar [R. rugosa alba] got my attention and I decided to try to breed hybrids of it. Unfortunately I did not succeed in pollinating it. So finally I decided to use its pollen [that of R. rugosa alba] to inseminate other roses. For that I chose Gloire de Dijon. ... This finally succeded in the third year, bringing up two seedlings." [Rosen-Zeitung 1890, p.28)

Dr. Müller called them seedling A and B. Seedling A finally went into commerce as 'Thusnelda' in 1891 [R-Z, p.13]